Struggling Nigerian economy hits biggest brewer’s bottom line

By our African Marketing Confederation News Team | 2024

But Nigerian Breweries says the challenges of 2023 have laid the groundwork for new opportunities in the wines and spirits segments.

Nigerian Breweries Plc, the country’s major brewing company, suffered a significant loss of US$71-million (N106-billion) for the last financial year, it has reported.

Photo: Nigerian Breweries

The company says the loss for the period ended 31 December 2023 “reflects the challenging economic environment in Nigeria”, including less spending by consumers as they struggle with high inflation that has eroded their buying power in the tight economy. 


“These severe economic conditions include persistent cash scarcity, removal of fuel subsidies resulting in a notable surge in energy cost, naira devaluation, foreign exchange scarcity, and continued challenged consumer spending,” Hans Essaadi, Managing Director/CEO, said when the results which were released to the Nigerian stock exchange. 


The company’s brands include Legend Extra Stout, Turbo King Dark Ale, Heineken Premium Lager, Star Lager Beer, and Tiger Lager Beer. 


Although there was a 9% growth in revenue, aided by a positive price mix, these positives were undermined by the impact of the devaluation of the naira currency, which caused a major loss on foreign exchange transactions. 


Strategy to reduce business risk 


The company’s strategy to meet the challenges presented by the tough economy is centred around reducing risk to the business by focusing on a positive price mix, efficient sales operations, strong and aggressive cost management, and other efficiency measures. 


“Going into the new [business] year, we are conscious of the continued severe macro-economic challenges – rising inflation, heightening operating costs and pressured consumer spend,” Essaadi said. 


“However, we believe the challenges of 2023 have laid the groundwork for opportunities that would lead to value creation for all our stakeholders.” 


One of these opportunities is the acquisition of an 80% stake in Distell Wines and Spirits Limited, a local business in the wines and spirits category. 


Nigerian Breweries has also secured an exclusive right to import all Heineken Beverages wines, spirits and cider brands from South Africa. This includes a license to market and distribute all the products in Nigeria, as well as to produce any of the imported brands within Nigeria. 


“This acquisition is part of efforts to provide access to a complementary multi-category portfolio of fast-growing wines and spirits brands, and capture significant growth opportunities in the wines and spirits segment of the beverages industry,” he explained. 

Dr Kin Kariisa

Group CEO - Next Media

Dr. Kin Kariisa is an extraordinary force at the helm of Next Media Services, a conglomerate encompassing NBS TV, Nile Post, Sanyuka TV, Next Radio, Salam TV, Next Communication, Next Productions, and an array of other influential enterprises. His dynamic role as Chief Executive Officer exemplifies his unwavering commitment to shaping media, business, and community landscapes.
With an esteemed academic journey, Dr. Kariisa’s accolades include an Honorary PhD in exemplary community service from the United Graduate College inTexas, an MBA from United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya, a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Huazong University in China, and a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics from Makerere University.
Dr. Kariisa pursued PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands. As a dynamic educator, he has shared his expertise as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at both Makerere University and Radboud University.

Dr Kin did his PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radbond University in Nigmegen, Netherlands. He previously served as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda and Radbond University in Netherlands.

Dr Kin did his postgraduate courses in Strategic Business Management, Strategic Leadership Communication and Strategies for Leading Successful Change Initiatives at Harvard University, Boston USA.

  • Other current and previous roles played by Dr Kin Kariisa:
  • Lecturer of e-Government and Information Security to graduate students at Makerere University, Kampala and Radbond University in the Netherlands
  • Director of Eco Bank Uganda Limited, one of the largest banks in Africa
  • Chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters, an umbrella industry association for all Television, Radio and online broadcasters in Uganda.
  • Chairman of Board of Directors of Nile Hotel International, that owns the leading hotel in Uganda, Kampala Serena Hotel.
  • Chairman of Board of Directors of Soliton Telmec Uganda, the leading telecom company in Optic fibre business managing over 80% of optic fibre in Uganda.